Photo by Cloned Milkmen.
Amazon’s Kindle is arguably the most ubiquitous ereader on the market today. The Kindle comes in a standard 6-inch model and the larger 9-inch Kindle DX, priced at $US139 for the Wi-Fi only version, $US189 for the 3G 6-inch model and $US379 for the 3G Kindle DX. The Kindle features a high-contrast E-ink display, is capable of storing over 3,500 books from the Kindle store, and if you spring for the 3G models you can download books anywhere, or surf the web using the built-in browser.
The Apple iPad isn’t strictly an ereader, but it certainly can be, with the help of Apple’s iBooks and the ability to sideload ebooks through alternative ebook stores that can be installed on the iPad and loaded up with books and documents that can be purchased from other sources. The iPad was designed to be much more than an ereader, but it serves that purpose just fine. An iPad will cost you $579 for the 16GB Wi-Fi version, $689 for the 32GB, and $799 for the 64GB model. 3G versions in those sizes cost $729, $839 and $949 respectively.
A similar logic applies to the many Android tablets on the market as the iPad: while ebook reading isn’t the sole purpose of the device, there’s a wide range of apps that can readily add that function. Most major ebook suppliers offer a specific Android app. Compared to Apple, you’ve got a lot more choice in terms of price points, from bargain-priced resistive touch models through to top-end designs with iPad-like price tags.
The disappearance of A&R and Border physical stores doesn’t mean the end for Kobo, especially since Pearson bought the online stores for those groups. The Kobo Ereader has a 6-inch e-ink display and long battery life. The local price for the reader is $199.
Sony was one of the first to market with an E-ink ebook reader, though Australian release took rather longer. It’s backed by Sony’s own ebook store, which isn’t as large as some of its competitors. Sony’s eReaders also support side-loading books and reading PDF documents, and will set you back $229 for the Pocket Edition and $299 for the Touch Edition.
This week’s honorable mention goes out to your smartphone. Many of you also noted that you didn’t need a specific ereader: you used your phone to read ebooks on the go, and your Android phone, Blackberry or iPhone were enough for you.
Have something to say about one of the competitors? Did we miss your favorite? Share your thoughts in the comments below.